This Adventurous Age

Adventures travelling and working around Australia.

2000 Travels October 13

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It was quite hot again.

I packed a picnic lunch and we drove out to Old Onslow. Had to go back out the road we came in on, for about 20kms, then take a gravel road that went west towards the Ashburton River.

It was initially a fairly uninteresting drive, past salt flats and creeks, through scrub. It got more interesting once the track started to run alongside the Ashburton River, where there were trees and some big pools. It was a sizeable river. As it originates way inland, near Newman, the catchment area is large and when there is cyclonic rainfall and similar in these parts, a huge volume of water comes this way. That is true also of the Fortescue River, where we stopped briefly the other day.

10-13-2000 ashburton river .jpg

Ashburton River on the way to Old Onslow

It looked like there was some pretty good bush camping places out there, with no facilities, of course.

We found the old town ruins – they were definitely worth coming out to see. There were parts of some old stone buildings that once would have been quite substantial – no roofs left on them now, though

10-13-2000 old onslow old police station jail.jpg

10-13-2000 Old Onslow police station & jail ruins.jpg

Remains of once substantial buildings at Old Onslow

10-13-2000 glass on top jail wall .jpg

Broken glass set on top of wall at old Jail

The old cemetery was a very bleak, remote place.

10-13-2000 old onslow cemetery.jpg

Life out here would have been rough, and it looks like many settlers died young.

After walking around and exploring the ruins and the cemetery for a while, we tried to find the sea – and ended up in mangrove mud flats.

We eventually found a likely fishing spot by a wide stretch of the lower river, but John was soon attacked by sandflies, so the fishing was abandoned and we left there.

10-13-2000 Ashburton River near mouth

The lower reaches of the Ashburton River, near its mouth


We drove back along the river to where it was crossed by a causeway that went to Urala Station and the Tubridgi Gas Plant, and had lunch by the river there. It was a pleasant, peaceful place. There were lots of little fish feeding in the water, so John fished there for a couple of hours. He caught one fish – which was more snagged than caught, but it was a good size.

It was a hot drive back to Onslow. We drove 112kms today.

Tea was chilli con carne. I rather overdid the chilli, but John enjoyed it.

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